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Am Nat. 2003 May;161(5):762-76. Epub 2003 May 2.

Modeling gynodioecy: novel scenarios for maintaining polymorphism.

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  • 1Department of Biology, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana 47405, USA. maia.bailey@vanderbilt.edu

Abstract

Nuclear-cytoplasmic gynodioecy is a breeding system of plants in which females and hermaphrodites co-occur in populations, and gender is jointly determined by cytoplasmic male sterility (CMS) genes and nuclear restorers of male fertility. Persistent polymorphism at both CMS and nuclear-restorer loci is necessary to maintain this breeding system. Theoretical models have explained how nuclear-cytoplasmic gynodioecy can be stable for certain assumptions. However, recent advances in our understanding of the genetics, population biology, and molecular mechanisms of sex determination in nuclear-cytoplasmic gynodioecious species suggest the utility of new models with different underlying assumptions. In this article, we examine different negative pleiotropic fitness effects of nuclear restorers (costs of restoration) using genetic and population assumptions based on recent literature. Specifically, we model populations with two CMS types and separate nuclear restorer loci for each CMS type. Under these assumptions, both overdominance for fitness and frequency-dependent selection at nuclear-restorer loci can support nuclear-cytoplasmic gynodioecy. Costs of restoration can be either dependent or independent of the cytoplasmic background. Seed fitness costs are more vulnerable to fixation of CMS types than pollen costs. Survivorship costs are effective at maintaining polymorphism even when total reproductive effects are low. Overall, our models display differences in the stability of nuclear-cytoplasmic gynodioecy and predicted population sex ratios that should be informative to researchers studying gynodioecy in the wild.

PMID:
12858283
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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